Naval forces off Somalia say they have launched an air strike on a pirate logistics dump on the country’s coastline.
The attack, backed by the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia and a UN Security Council resolution, dispatched planes launched from European naval vessels to destroy pirate equipment.
EU Navfor, the European combined naval force in the area, reported that assessment is on-going but said that its surveillance of the area during the action indicated that no Somalis were injured on shore during the attack.
The operation was one of the first direct attacks that naval forces have launched against pirate activity on shore, rather than at sea where their motherships and attack boats can be hard to detect.
“We believe this action by the EU Naval Force will further increase the pressure and disrupt pirates’ efforts to get out to sea to attack merchant shipping and dhows,” said operations commander Rear Admiral Duncan Potts.
“The local Somali people and fishermen, many of whom have suffered so much because of piracy in the region, can be reassured that our focus was on known pirate supplies and will remain so in the future.”
Rear-Adm Potts said that European forces did not set foot on Somali soil and that the operation extended action underway to disrupt pirate activity at sea.
EU Navfor comprises nine warships and five maritime patrol aircraft.